Day of the Holy Spirit

Altar Mosaic Hospitality of Abraham in St. Sophia Orthodox Church, Canada (Based on the mosaic from 6th century church St. Vitale, in Ravenna, Italy)

On the day after every Great Feast, the post-feast honours the one through whom the Feast Day is made possible. Today is called Day of the Holy Spirit. It is the 2nd of the three days in a row dedicated to the Holy Spirit, with Pentecost beginning the three-day run. This whole week is fast-free.

When you look at the candles and lamps burning in church, rise in thought from the material fire to the immaterial fire of the Holy Spirit, for our God is a consuming fire. When you see and smell the fragrant incense, rise in thought to the spiritual fragrance of the Holy Spirit, ‘for we are unto God a sweet savor of Christ’… ‘Every soul is quickened by the Holy Spirit.’ Recognize that the Holy Spirit stands in the same relation to your soul as air stands in relation to your body… The Holy Spirit comforts the believing soul, as a mother comforts her child. ~ St. John of Kronstadt

The grace of the Holy Spirit which is given mystically to every Christian when he is baptized acts and is manifested in proportion to our obedience to the commandments of the Lord. That is, if a Christian obeys the commandments of the Lord more, grace acts with him more, while if he obeys them less, grace acts within him less. Just as a spark, when covered in the ashes of fire becomes increasingly manifest as one removes the ashes, and the more fire wood you put the more the fire burns, so the grace that has been given to every Christian through Holy Baptism is hidden in the heart and covered up by the passions and sins, and the more a man acts in accordance with the commandments of Christ, the more he is cleansed of the passions and the more the fire of Divine grace lights in his heart, illumines and deifies him. ~ St. Nikodemos of the Holy Mountain


Happy Holy Spirit Day

Hospitality of Abraham Icon St. Sophia Orthodox Church, Canada

Happy Holy Spirit Day!

Over the years I’ve noticed that on Pentecost and the following day (Holy Spirit Day), it seems breezier than usual. The trees, flowers and grasses sway and dance in the gentle winds. The Breath of the Holy Spirit encircles all. Today the sun shines brighter. More golden. Today the birds sing sweeter. Today a wordless song of gratitude bubbles up within me – a fountain of joy… Thanking God, for everything. (Even my sore foot!)

Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing. ~ Psalm 100:2  

For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. ~ Isaiah 55:12

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance… ~Galatians 5:22-23

For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth, … but be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord… ~ Ephesians 5: 9, 18, 19

The closer we approach God, the closer we approach each other, just as the closer rays of light are to each other, the closer they are to the Sun. In the coming Kingdom of God there will be unity, mutual love and concord. The Holy Trinity remains eternally unchanging, all-perfect, united in essence and indivisible. ~ St. John the Wonderworker of Shanghai and San Francisco

The One, Indivisible Trinity ever remains the Trinity. The Father always remains the Father, the Son remains the Son, the Holy Spirit remains the Holy Spirit. Besides Their personal Properties, They all share all in common and in unity. That is why the Holy Trinity is One God. ~ St. John the Wonderworker of Shanghai and San Francisco

The Comforter, the Holy Spirit, who fills the whole universe, passes through all believing, meek, humble, good, and simple human souls, dwelling in them, vivifying and strengthening them. He becomes one spirit with them and everything to them – light, strength, peace, joy, success in their undertakings, especially in a pious life, and everything good – “going through all understanding, pure and most subtle spirits” … filled with the Spirit of God similarly as a sponge is filled with water. ~ St. John of Kronstadt.

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